Sleep Apnoea and CPAP Machines

Sleep Apnoea and CPAP Machines are a common ailment and treatment pairing. What is Sleep Apnoea ? It is a sleep disorder caused by restrictions or obstructions that interrupt a persons regular breathing pattern during sleep. Breathing is interrupted for periods lasting from a few seconds to, worryingly, minutes. Resumption of normal breathing can be accompanied by a gagging or snorting sound. Sleep Apnoea sufferers may have lousy days due to having had interrupted sleep, feeling tired and lazy. In children Sleep Apnoea can produce behavioural problems such as irritability and hyperactivity.

What Is CPAP?

Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (or CPAP Machines) are used to provide positive airway pressure ventilation. A stable level of pressure which is greater than the ambient or atmospheric pressure is Continuously applied to the upper respiratory tract of a person. The aim of CPAP is that by applying a Positive Pressure the patients upper airway tract remains open and unrestricted. This technique has proved to be useful and very effective in cases of obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA). Another benefit is in reducing the amount of effort required for breathing in conditions such as acute decompensated heart failure. Respiratory sleep disorders can be treated with the aide of CPAP before they develop into full blown obstructive sleep apnoea.

CPAP For Infants

In cases where an infants lungs have not fully developed, such as in pre-term, CPAP can offer effective assistance and form part of their treatment. This can be as an alternative to treatment with steroids.

How Do CPAP Machines Work?

A very simple description would be that of an air pump or compressor that is generally driven by an electric motor.  For a medical application the pressure has to be monitored and controlled accurately so additional sensors, regulators and safety features are added in addition to a high level of airway filtration and cleanliness for as safe and sterile a delivery as is possible.

Ambient room air is pressurised and delivered to the patient through hose to the patient. The use of a mask depends on the clinical requirements. This pressurised air keeps the airway open allowing normal breathing free of obstruction.

When Not To Use CPAP

CPAP should not be used under the following conditions:

  • Unstable patients who are agitated or distressed.
  • Patients who cannot perform a breathing cycle (inhale/ exhale…) on their own.
  • Where the fitting of a mask will impact existing facial injury.
  • Where a clinician has advised against it.

Where To Buy CPAP Machines

Browse a range of CPAP Machines, Masks, Humidifiers and accessories in our catalogue ->

More CPAP Machines, Masks, Humidifiers and accessories


This article does not constitute or aim to serve as medical advice. It is intended to provide simplified and general information to assist the readers understanding of the subject matter. Please seek a Clinicians or a medical professionals advice as regards your specific needs and requirements.

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